Christian News Network reports:
The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department’s Gang and Violent Crime Unit, along with U.S. marshals, arrested a teenager on Monday in the death of Indiana pastor’s wife Amanda Blackburn.
The suspect has been identified as 18-year-old Larry Taylor of Indianapolis, who neighbors state they saw in the area the morning that Blackburn was killed. Detectives believe that Taylor, who sought to burglarize the home, observed Pastor Davey Blackburn leaving the residence to go to the gym. He then entered the front door, which had been left onlocked as Amanda Blackburn waited for her husband to return home.
3 Ἀγαπητοί, πᾶσαν σπουδὴν ποιούμενος γράφειν ὑμῖν περὶ τῆς κοινῆς ἡμῶν σωτηρίας ἀνάγκην ἔσχον γράψαι ὑμῖν παρακαλῶν ἐπαγωνίζεσθαι τῇ ἅπαξ παραδοθείσῃ τοῖς ἁγίοις πίστει. (Jude 1:3 NA28)
3 Beloved, being extremely eager to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you encouraging you to contend for the faith delivered once for all to the saints. (Jude 1:3 Translated from the NA28 Greek text)
One of the topics of contention that I often deal with “commenters” whom I screen and block and with those who contact me via email is that “doctrine” is different from the truth given to the Church by our Lord through the Apostles. These are the same people who contend that there is a seperation between truth and the revealed truth the Church has in God’s Word.
H/T to Glenn Chatfield over at The Watchman’s Bagpipes blog for this one. This piece contains unbridled blasphemy that will raise the blood pressure of Bible believing Christians. Jeffrey Walton of Juicy Ecumenism reports that “During the communion liturgy, Wesley [Theological Seminary] Professor and Episcopal Priest Sathianathan Clarke proclaimed: ‘It is right, and a good and joyful thing, always and everywhere to give thanks to you, O Father and Mother, creator of all things old, new and in transition.’”
“In transition” refers to transgender people who have convinced themselves that God made a mistake when He made them male and female. Sadly, these people have the ridiculous idea that male-to-female transsexuals are actually females trapped in male bodies, and vise versa.
So, let’s begin at the beginning of what Chatfield refers to as “blasphemy of great proportions”:
Students at United Methodist-affiliated Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC gathered Thursday for a special service to commemorate the lives of persons who identify as transgender.
The noontime “Transgender Day of Remembrance” service held November 19 at Wesley’s Oxnam chapel was sponsored by Of Sacred Worth, a student organization established to promote understanding of LGBTQ people in the church.
9 “ Pray, then, in this way:
‘Our Father who is in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
10 ‘ Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
11 ‘ Give us this day our daily bread.
12 ‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 ‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. [For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’] Matthew 6:9-13 NASB
In this post we will look at the danger of “entering temptation.” There is no doubt that most believers walk in defeat in this battle much if not most of the time. On top of the guilt and self-abhorrence that are natural products of Christians sinning, there is also the battle fatigue that comes upon them which results in more guilt simply for being “tempted” in the first place. Of course, much of this can be blamed on faulty theology and an extreme drought in the area of teaching the Biblical truth about sin and temptation from our pulpits and Bible studies. To understand the danger of “entering temptation” we must first understand what it is and what it is not.
Berean Research has the story of a transgender Lutheran who is about to be ordained. Be sure to watch the video:
She says she is “worthy” and “deserving.”
She’s a he.
He’s transgendered (calls himself She).
He’s about to be ordained in the “Lutheran” “Church” (both in bunny ears)
He says he is worthy and deserving to be baptized, and worthy of the promises of God.
Unfortunately, God promises wrath to those who do not repent of their sin and believe on Jesus, who washes all sin clean by His shed blood.
The Reformation Project’s Matthew Vines is sharing this man’s testimony and speech from the RP’s recent Kansas City conference: Nicole Garcia lit up the room with a fiery, heartfelt, and theologically grounded keynote address on our opening night,” says Vines, who launched a campaign to get all churches (especially the theologically grounded ones) to stop calling homosexuality a sin and to embrace gay members and gay marriage. (See our White Paper on the Homosexual Agenda.)
Here is a snippet of the speech, which you can watch on YouTube in its entirety:
Is it any wonder that I identify with this story? A person of color. A person who is not of the dominant culture. A person who does not fit into the gender binary systems. I really see the world through the eyes of the Ethiopian eunuch. For I, too, believe that Christ Jesus suffered, died, and rose from the dead in order that I may have eternal life in his kingdom—that I am worthy of baptism, I am worthy of the promises of God. I have been recreated, justified, and sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
Republished with permission (Source)
According to Christian Examiner:
An Italian research group of social psychologists recently published a paper in The Journal of Sexual Medicine claiming “homophobia” is a disease and homophobic attitudes are strong indicators of mental disorders.
“Garbage,” says Robert Oscar Lopez, a professor at California State University-Northridge.
Lopez, reportedly a member of a church affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention and frequent writer in conservative publications, explained the study was done mostly by homosexuals and their supporters in the social psychology field, an academic discipline notably lacking in social conservatives.
“It’s almost impossible for the research teams to critique their own methodologies or to improve or to see their own biases.”
News Busters reports:
ABC’s Scandal just crossed a sickening line in the episode “Baby It’s Cold Outside.” The entire hour was an advertisement for Planned Parenthood, but the absolute worst scene was a montage set to the Christmas hymn “Silent Night,” a song that celebrates the birth of Christ, while main character Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) has an abortion, killing her and the president’s baby. Between the execution of a man that opens the graphic clip below, the talk of “soft tissue,” saying family destroys you, watching a doctor take his instruments between Olivia’s legs, and the hint of a smile on her lips at the end, it is a truly vile scene, stomach churning scene.
Amy Spreeman of Berean Research shares a letter she received from a mom who learned that, while she attended a Bible study, the children’s leaders were “cheerfully working to coerce the children into praying the Sinner’s Prayer.” But is reciting a prayer out loud or in our heads even biblical? Some say yes, others say no. Amy believes “it is biblical to pray to Jesus to ask Him to forgive us our sins. But without true repentance, there can be no regeneration.” Thus, “it is not biblical to say someone is saved ‘because of reciting the Sinner’s Prayer.’ We must put our trust, hope, and faith in Christ and His sacrifice on the cross, but to give someone assurance of salvation based on reciting a prayer, or thinking the words in our heads as someone else says them, does not produce saving faith.”
According to Christian News Network:
Arizon’s Grand Canyon University has announced that it has decided to grant employee benefits to homosexual staff while reiterating its belief that marriage can only be defined as the union of one man man and one woman.
The university says that it made the change as federal and state governments “have recently changed their long-held definition of marriage and now recognize same-sex marriage as lawful.”
3 As He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things happen, and what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?”
4 And Jesus answered and said to them, “ See to it that no one misleads you. 5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many. 6 You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end. 7 For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes. 8 But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs.
9 “ Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. 10 At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one another. 11 Many false prophets will arise and will mislead many. 12 Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. 13 But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved. 14 This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:3-14 NASB
When I was a youth back in the 1960’s I remember hearing many sermons in our church about how the signs of the end of the age were upon us and that it would only be a short time until the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. In 1970 Hal Lindsey published his book The Late Great Planet Earth. I read it while I was in the Navy in the early 1970’s. I bought it at the bookstore of a church in Washington, D.C. that I was attending at that time. The focus of that book was to get the reader to buy into the fact that the signs of the times were indicating that the Great Tribulation was very near. One of the points Lindsey and others used during that time to show that we were in the birth pangs was how horrible things were throughout the world morally, politically, militarily, and how the “gospel” was being preached around the world. Here we are over 40 years later and I defy anyone to say that things have improved in any of those categories since then. In Matthew 24:3-14, which I placed at the top of this post, our Lord tells us what the world would be like leading up to the end of this age. This age began at the Cross and will continue until the cup of God’s Wrath is filled.
According to Christian Examiner:
James Smith, widower of Moira Smith, a police officer who died rescuing others from the south tower during the 2001 attacks on the New York World Trade Centers, FedExed his wife’s Woman of the Year award back to Glamour magazine.
He was outraged the award this year was given to Bruce Jenner, who changed his name to Caitlyn after having sex-change operations earlier this year.
Smith said giving the award to Jenner insulted his wife’s memory.
Christian News Network reports:
A female suicide bomber blew herself up on Tuesday as French police conducted a pre-dawn raid on an apartment building in an operation to locate the mastermind associated with Friday’s massacre in Paris.
Police closed in on an apartment building in Saint-Denis, a suburb of Paris, and according to reports, a woman detonated a suicide vest after confronting authorities. Residents report hearing gunfire and explosions at 4:30 and 7:30 a.m. local time.
According to National Review:
A report by a renowned journalist states that Christians are to be excluded from an impending official United States government declaration of ISIS genocide. If true, it would reflect a familiar pattern within the administration of a politically correct bias that views Christians — even non-Western congregations such as those in Iraq and Syria — never as victims but always as Inquisition-style oppressors. (That a State Department genocide designation for ISIS may be imminent was acknowledged last week in congressional testimony, by Ambassador Anne Patterson, the assistant secretary of the State Department’s Near East Bureau.)
Yazidis, according to the story by investigative reporter Michael Isikoff, are going to be officially recognized as genocide victims, and rightly so. Yet Christians, who are also among the most vulnerable religious minority groups that have been deliberately and mercilessly targeted for eradication by ISIS, are not. This is not an academic matter. A genocide designation would have significant policy implications for American efforts to restore property and lands taken from the minority groups and for offers of aid, asylum, and other protections to such victims. Worse, it would mean that, under the Genocide Convention, the United States and other governments would not be bound to act to suppress or even prevent the genocide of these Christians.
John Lanagan of My Word Like Fire reports:
Southern Baptist Convention President Ronnie Floyd will be speaking in December at Onething, the International House of Prayer’s annual celebration/convention. So will Francis Chan–for the second time. Onething takes place December 28-31, 2015.
Catholic Matt Maher will be one of the worship leaders. The IHOP Onething Worship and Leaders page notes that Maher played at the World Meeting of Families, which marked “Pope Francis’ first visit to the U.S. this year.”
Ronnie Floyd’s appearance at Onething potentially opens some Southern Baptist members to IHOP-KC influence. How many SBC members will be watching Onething online because Floyd will be speaking there? As noted in Francis Chan as IHOP-KC’s public relations agent?, Chan’s 2013 participation in Onething was a public relations bonanza for IHOP-KC.
Popular blogger and pastor Tim Challies has once again addressed Jesus Calling, the blockbuster book that contains “devotions for every day of the year.” Author Sarah Young claims direct divine revelations. Tim wrote a review (here) in 2011 and now lays out 10 significant problems with the hugely popular devotional.
Sarah Young’s Jesus Calling is a phenomenon that shows no signs of slowing down. According to publisher Thomas Nelson, it “continues to grow in units sold each year since it was released [and] has surpassed 15 million copies sold.” Nelson is involved in an expansive new marketing campaign that involves a new web site and daily radio devotionals. ECPA reports that “Thomas Nelson began its partnership with the Salem Media group to provide 60-second daily messages on Eric Metaxas’ show, which is carried on more than 100 stations nationwide and worldwide on SiriusXM Radio. The Jesus Calling radio devotional reaches more than 500,000 people each day through these segments.” With 15 million copies sold, it has marched its way into rare company.
Yet it is a deeply troubling book. I am going to point out 10 serious problems with Jesus Calling in the hope that you will consider and heed these warnings.
1. She speaks for God. Far and away the most troubling aspect of the book is its very premise—that Sarah Young hears from Jesus and then dutifully brings his messages to her readers. Jesus Calling makes the boldest, gutsiest, and, to my mind, most arrogant claim of any book ever to be considered Christian. The publisher describes the book in this way: “After many years of writing her own words in her prayer journal, missionary Sarah Young decided to be more attentive to the Savior’s voice and begin listening for what He was saying. So with pen in hand, she embarked on a journey that forever changed her—and many others around the world. In these powerful pages are the words and Scriptures Jesus lovingly laid on her heart. Words of reassurance, comfort, and hope. Words that have made her increasingly aware of His presence and allowed her to enjoy His peace (italics mine).” There is no way to avoid her claim that she is communicating divine revelation, a claim that raises a host of questions and concerns, not the least of which is the doctrine of Scripture alone which assures us that the Bible and the Bible alone is sufficient to guide us in all matters of faith and practice.
2. She proclaims the insufficiency of the Bible. Jesus Calling only exists because Sarah Young had a deep desire to hear from God outside of the Bible. In the introduction she describes the book’s genesis: “I began to wonder if I … could receive messages during my times of communing with God. I had been writing in prayer journals for years, but that was one-way communication: I did all the talking. I knew that God communicated with me through the Bible, but I yearned for more. Increasingly, I wanted to hear what God had to say to me personally on a given day.” In those few sentences she sets up unnecessary competition between her revelation and what we are told of the Bible in 2 Timothy 3:16-17: “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” Biblically, there is no category for what she provides as the heart and soul of her book. Biblically, there is no need for it and no reason we should expect or heed it.
According to Christian News Network:
The California-based band Eagles of Death Metal was playing their song “Kiss the Devil” at the moment that three terrorists stormed a Paris theater Friday and began opening fire, reports state.
“Who’ll love the devil? Who’ll sing his song?” the song’s lyrics ask. “Who will kiss the devil on his tongue?”
According to Christian News Network:
A NASA spacecraft has discovered what appear to be ice-spewing volcanoes on the surface of Pluto, puzzling scientists who believed the distant world was old, dead, and dormant.
Last week, scientists at an American Astronomical Society meeting in National Harbor, Maryland, announced new findings from NASA’s “New Horizons” spacecraft, which flew by Pluto earlier this year. “New Horizons” was the first spacecraft to visit Pluto, so the data and images it collected have helped astronomers better understand the dwarf planet.
Prior to the Pluto flyby, Christian astronomers predicted that “New Horizons” would find evidence that Pluto is much younger than secular scientists allege.
“Rather than weakening the case for creation, data collected by previous spacecraft have only strengthened the case that our solar system was designed and is much younger than the age of 4.5 billion years that secular scientists have assigned to it,” wrote Dr. Jake Hebert, a physicist with the Institute for Creation Research (ICR). “Christians should not be surprised if data collected by the New Horizons spacecraft continues this trend.”
Christian News Network reports:
French fighter jets dropped 20 bombs on key ISIS targets in Raqqa, Syria on Sunday in retribution for the deadly massacre in Paris on Friday that killed over 130.
The airstrike, carried out in conjunction with the U.S. from the United Arab Emirates and Jordan, struck an ISIS command center, a jihadist training center and an ammunition depot.
“The raid … including 10 fighter jets, was launched simultaneously from the United Arab Emirates and Jordan,” a statement from the French Ministry of Defense read. “Twenty bombs were dropped.”
According to Christian News Network:
In wake of a series of terrorist attacks that struck Paris on Friday night, the first question posed to Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders during Saturday night’s Democratic debate was whether he still believes climate change is the No. 1 national security threat to the United States—and Twitter users had a lot to say about his answer.
“Absolutely,” he said. “In fact, climate change is directly related to the growth of terrorism.” Sanders added that climate change will cause farmers in countries “all over the world” to struggle with a scarcity of water and land to grow crops, which Sanders said studies have shown leads to international conflict.
Some Twitter users mocked Sanders’ response, saying he should tell the French people that but wouldn’t say that if he were face to face with a member of the Islamic State group.
Religion News Service reports:
Pope Francis raised the specter of a World War III “in pieces,” Muslims issued statements of condemnation, while evangelical Christians in America debated whether to speak of a “war with Islam.”
These were some of the responses by religious leaders around the world on Saturday (Nov. 14) to the series of attacks overnight in Paris which left more than 120 people dead.
“This is not human,” Francis said phone call to an Italian Catholic television station. Asked by the interviewer if it was part of a “Third World War in pieces,” he responded: “This is a piece. There is no justification for such things.”
Earlier, the Vatican’s chief spokesman, Rev. Federico Lombardi, released a statement saying: “This is an attack on peace for all humanity, and it requires a decisive, supportive response on the part of all of us as we counter the spread the homicidal hatred in all of its forms.”
In Cairo, Al-Azhar University, the preeminent seat of Sunni Muslim scholarship, called the attacks a criminal act, and said that “Islam denounces any violence,” the Arabic news site Al Arabiya reported, quoting Egypt’s state news agency MENA.